Poverty

Social Networks and Homelessness Among Women Heads of Household

Social Networks and Homelessness Among Women Heads of Household
American Journal of Community Psychology , 33:1-2, pp. 7-20.

Toohey, Siobhan, M., Shinn, M. & Weitzman, B.C.
01/01/2004

To examine possible bidirectional relationships between homelessness and deficient social networks, we compared the networks of 251 mothers before, and approximately 5 years after, their families entered shelters with networks of 291 consistently housed poor mothers. At Time 1, more women on the verge of homelessness than housed women reported that they had mothers, grandmothers, friends, and relatives but fewer believed these network members were housing resources. At Time 2, after homeless women were rehoused, these network differences between consistently housed and formerly homeless women had largely disappeared. Contrary to prior research findings, formerly homeless mothers did not report smaller networks, more children or fewer partners. However, formerly homeless women did report fewer positive functions. Because of city policies, homeless mothers were frequently rehoused far from network members.

The Future Of The Public’s Health: Vision, Values, And Strategies

The Future Of The Public’s Health: Vision, Values, And Strategies
Health Affairs, Vol. 23, Issue 4, 96-107.

Gostin, L.O., Boufford, J.I. & Martinez, R.
01/01/2004

The expansive vision of modern public health, "healthy people in healthy communities," is politically charged. This paper offers a justification for this broad vision and offers concrete proposals. By pointing to the poor condition of public health agencies; urging a transition to an intersectoral public health system; promoting the adoption of bold changes in U.S. physical, social, and economic conditions; and endorsing a values shift to a commitment to collective interest in healthier communities, we hope to take a dramatic step toward achieving these aspirations for "healthy people in healthy communities."

The Pecking Order: Which Siblings Succeed and Why

The Pecking Order: Which Siblings Succeed and Why
New York: Pantheon Books,

Conley, D.
01/01/2004

In recent years, people have begun to examine family dynamics for clues to individual success. Birth order, in particular, has been a favored explanation for the differences between siblings in everything from leadership skills to romantic conquests. Now Dalton Conley, a sociology professor at NYU, reveals that indeed our siblings may affect how our lives turn out, but not in the ways we might think. Conley made an effort not to simplify the very complex familial data collected by both the United States Census, a long-term study conducted by the University of Michigan, and the University of Chicago's General Social Survey. What he found was that the differences between siblings outweigh almost every other kind of difference between any two individuals in the United States. Every family has a pecking order independent of birth order, and the differences between siblings are magnified by poverty and disenfranchisement. In these situations, families invest in the sibling most likely to succeed, leading to stark divides, even class differences between family members. Oddly, the choice of successful sibling is made independent of birth order, parental attention, or innate talents, and becomes a tacit agreement among family members. Conley uses a plethora of examples, including Bill and Roger Clinton, to illustrate his findings, and readers will nod knowingly at many of the ubiquitous family behaviors that set siblings up for differing life paths. Ultimately, what The Pecking Order reveals is that there is no single factor that can predict one's success or failure in life, but that complex, multilayered familial dynamics play the biggest part in determining our fate.

Virtual District, Real Improvement: A Retrospective Evaluation of the Chancellor's District, 1996-2003

Virtual District, Real Improvement: A Retrospective Evaluation of the Chancellor's District, 1996-2003
New York University, Institute for Education and Social Policy,

Phenix, D., Siegel, D., Zaltsman, A. & Fruchter, N.
01/01/2004

This study is a retrospective analysis of the outcomes of the Chancellor’s District, a virtual district created to improve New York City’s most poorly performing public schools. New York City Schools Chancellor Rudy Crew initiated the district in 1996 to remove state-identified low-performing schools from their sub-district authorities, and to accelerate their improvement by imposing a centralized management structure, a uniform curriculum, and intensive professional development. The initiative was terminated in 2003 when a new, Mayoral-controlled regime restructured the city school system.

Welfare Reform in Miami: Implementation, Effects, and Experiences of Poor Families and Neighborhoods

Welfare Reform in Miami: Implementation, Effects, and Experiences of Poor Families and Neighborhoods
MDRC,

Brock, T., Kwakye, I., Polyné, J.C., Richburg-Hayes, L., Seith, D., Stepick, A… & Rich, S.
01/01/2004

The 1996 national welfare reform law introduced a five-year time limit on federally funded cash assistance, imposed tough new work requirements, restricted benefits for noncitizens, and gave states more flexibility to design their welfare programs than in the past. Anticipating that the law might pose particular challenges for urban areas — where poverty and welfare receipt are concentrated — MDRC launched a study to examine its implementation and effects in four big cities. This report focuses on trends in Miami-Dade County between 1996 and 2002.

What Matters to Low-Income Patients in Ambulatory Care Facilities?

What Matters to Low-Income Patients in Ambulatory Care Facilities?
Medical Care Research and Review. Sep 2004; 61: 352 - 375.

Delia, D., Hall, A. & Billings, J.
01/01/2004

Poor, uninsured, and minority patients depend disproportionately on hospital outpatient departments (OPDs) and freestanding health centers for ambulatory care. These providers confront significant challenges, including limited resources, greater demand for services, and the need to improve quality and patient satisfaction. The authors use a survey of patients in OPDs and health centers in New York City to determine which aspects of the ambulatory care visit have the greatest influence on patients’ overall site evaluation. The personal interaction between patients and physicians, provider continuity, and the general cleanliness/appearance of the facility stand out as high priorities. Access to services and interactions with other facility staff are of significant, although lesser, importance. These findings suggest ways to restructure the delivery of care so that it is more responsive to the concerns of low-income patients.

Lifting Up the Poor: A Dialogue on Religion, Poverty, and Welfare Reform

Lifting Up the Poor: A Dialogue on Religion, Poverty, and Welfare Reform
Washington, DC: Brookings Institution Press, 2003

Bane, M.J., and L. Mead
10/10/2003

People who participate in debates about the causes and cures of poverty often speak from religious conviction. But those convictions are rarely made explicit or debated on their own terms. Rarely is the influence of personal religious commitment on policy decisions examined.

Two of the nation's foremost scholars and policy advocates break the mold in this lively volume, the first to be published in the new Pew Forum Dialogues on Religion and Public Life. The authors bring their faith traditions, policy experience, academic expertise, and political commitments together in this moving, pointed, and informed discussion of poverty, one of our most vexing public issues.

Mary Jo Bane writes of her experiences running social service agencies, work that has been informed by "Catholic social teaching, and a Catholic sensibility that is shaped every day by prayer and worship." Policy analysis, she writes, is often "indeterminate" and "inconclusive." It requires grappling with "competing values that must be balanced." It demands judgment calls, and Bane's Catholic sensibility informs the calls she makes.

Drawing from various Christian traditions, Lawrence Mead's essay discusses the role of nurturing Christian virtues and personal responsibility as a means of transforming a "defeatist culture" and combating poverty. Quoting Shelley, Mead describes theologians as the "unacknowledged legislators of mankind" and argues that even nonbelievers can look to the Christian tradition as "the crucible that formed the moral values of modern politics."

Bane emphasizes the social justice claims of her tradition, and Mead challenges the view of many who see economic poverty as a biblical priority that deserves "preference ahead of other social concerns." But both assert that an engagement with religious traditions is indispensable to an honest and searching debate about poverty, policy choices, and the public purposes of religion.

Gender, Race, Class and Welfare Reform

Gender, Race, Class and Welfare Reform
Roundtable of Institutions of People of Color and the Women of Color Policy Newtwork

Walter Stafford, Diana Salas, Melissa Mendez
08/01/2003

This study on welfare reform contends that race and gender coalesce through historic and contemporary government, policy and market failures to deny benefits and jobs to women of color while blaming them for their condition. It is divided into three sections: the first addresses national policy trends with an emphasis on race and gender, the second looks at New York City, and the third offers recommendations. The report was published in the National Urban League's State of Black America, 2003.

Microfinance: Analytical Issues for India

Microfinance: Analytical Issues for India
India's Financial Sector: Issues, Challenges and Policy Options. Edited by Basu, Priya. Oxford University Press

Morduch, J. & Rutherford, S.
04/04/2003

Poor households face many constraints in trying to save, invest, and protect their livelihoods. They take financial intermediation seriously and devote considerable effort to finding workable solutions. Most of the solutions are found in the informal sector, which, so far, offers low-income households convenience and flexibility unmatched by formal intermediaries. The microfinance movement is striving to match the convenience and flexibility of the informal sector, while adding reliability and the promise of continuity, and in some countries it is already doing this on a significant scale. Getting to this point - reaching poor people on a massive scale with popular products on a continuous basis - has involved rethinking basic assumptions along the way. One by one, the keywords of the 1980s and 1990s - women, groups, graduation, microbusinesses, and credit - are giving way to those of the new century - convenience, reliability, continuity, and a flexible range of services. We describe the elements that we feel have contributed most and that are most relevant for India.

Second Annual Status of Women of Color Report: Women of Color in New York City: Still Invisible in Policy

Second Annual Status of Women of Color Report: Women of Color in New York City: Still Invisible in Policy
Women of Color Policy Network Roundtable of Institutions of People of Color

Stafford, Walter & Salas, Diana
03/01/2003

Demography is not destiny. While groups of color - Asians, Blacks, Latinos, and Native Americans - have emerged as New York City's new majority, large segments of the groups remain burdened by many of the historical problems associated with disadvantaged minorities. This report highlights the problems faced by lower-income women of color, especially single mothers. Often bypassed during the economic boom of the 1990s, these women have found that employment opportunities have all but evaporated in the current economic malaise. The elimination of federal welfare entitlements have only served to exacerbate these problems. To read more click on the link below.

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